How much car prices have really changed in South Africa – 1986 to 2021 – TopAuto
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Tuesday / 28 June 2022
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How much car prices have really changed in South Africa – 1986 to 2021

The vehicle market in South Africa is slowly recovering from the hard times created by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Several reports from local and international publications have highlighted that cars are not getting any cheaper, however, with the situation in South Africa amplified by our unique economic conditions.

Along with the unideal economic circumstances, South Africans also pay extremely high vehicle taxes – as high as 42% of the price of the vehicle, according to Naamsa.

This has helped produce four consecutive quarters of car price increases during 2020, as well as a situation where second-hand car prices have increased in real terms.

This is the first time this has taken place since 2010, according to a report by TransUnion.

Price increases

To see by how much car prices have really increased in South Africa in recent years, we looked at price trends from 1986 to 2021.

We used the Toyota Hilux in the comparison for consistency, as it is a top-selling model from the best-selling vehicle brand in South Africa.

It is also one of the few models which has consistently been on sale in the country since 1986.

In March 1986, the Toyota Hilux 1600 SWB was the cheapest model on the market, at a starting price of R12,475.

If we adjust this price for inflation, to get it into the equivalent 2021 value, it equates to R157,265.

This is compared to the current starting price for the Hilux range – excluding chassis cab models – at R304,400 for the Hilux 2.7 VVTi RB S.

It is not completely fair to judge the bakkies like-for-like, however, as the main thing they have in common today is their badge – but it does provide a good picture of how prices have fluctuated over the years.

The chart below shows a complete picture of how much the price of the Toyota Hilux has changed in South African from 1986 to today – versus inflation.

Click on the graph to enlarge it.

It must be noted that the price spike in 2014 is due to the release of the Legend 45 range. This came with a high level of standard equipment in celebration of the Hilux’s 45th anniversary.

From 2014 to 2020, every dot represents a new Toyota Hilux model.

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